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Nidalee Build Guide by Felle

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Felle

A Simple Guide to Success - AP Nidalee

Felle Last updated on November 11, 2013
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Ability Sequence

Ability Key Q
Ability Key W
Ability Key E
Ability Key R

Not Updated For Current Season

The masteries shown here are not yet updated for the current season, the guide author needs to set up the new masteries. As such, they will be different than the masteries you see in-game.



Offense: 21

Honor Guard

Defense: 0


Utility: 9

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This guide is made to make you a better Nidalee player.It will focus on her role. her job and how to play her effectively as well as efficiently.Hope everyone learns something new in this guide

My introduction!

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Pros / Cons


-Them chunks with spears make enemy carries go home
-Her jukes could be quite satisfying
-Jumps over certain walls
-Outrun enemies in jungle with ease
-Late game primal surge heals 500+ health
-In my opinion- no official counters


-Can't usually win all-ins in 1 v 1.

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Skill Set

15% movement speed boost in the brush.This gives Nidalee the ability to chase,run,survive and win. Always use brushes to your advantage.

Throws a spear from distasnce dealing up to 250% damage.Main damage. (How to deal maximaximum damage will be described in the Tips and Tricks section.)

Lays a trap , shows vision around the trap for a short time when placed. Lasts 4 minutes.Spam your bushwhacks around you and in brushes while maintaining your mana at a decent level. May save you from ganks.

Heals an ally of your choice or yourself, and boosts attack speed for 7 seconds. Good use of this could be game changing experience.

Deals up to 300% damage depending on how low enemy's health is. Never a good idea to start out your combo with this one first, but to end.

Form of transportation and combat. [see Tips and Tricks]

Deals kinda sorta aoe (area of effect) to units in front of you. This is the mobbing skill for Nidalee.

Transformation. human to cougar, cougar to human. Use it wisely.

See Tips and Tricks section for tips and tricks!

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First buy

Back then Nidalees used to start with a Faerie Charm, a sight ward and 5 Health Potion, but getting Doran's Ring could give you just as much survivability with that 60+ health, mana regeneration, sustainability with that 2 health pots, plus ward coverage with bushwhacks. Don't forget that extra damage from the ring +15 AP.

Second buy

This gets you started in preparation for Archangel's Staff and gives you a decent amount of mana and mana regeneration early.

Third buys

Basically, Chalice of Harmony laning against an AP champion and Seeker's Armguard laning against an AD brusier or assassins ( Zed, Pantheon, Talon)
They both will do their job even when you fully finish the item. So I suggest you get one depending on who you're laning against.

Fourth buy

Once you have this, your spears will start dealing op damages. You're unlikely to build this item with one recall so saving up your money 1500+ before recalling to base would be ideal for your Needlessly Large Rod buy.

Fifth buy

This item will provide you with more mobility and magic penetration. It will come in handy when chasing enemies. (Note: Buying Tier 1 Boots of Speed earlier than this step will not hurt but only help as its 25+ movement speed is rather a fair buy for 325 gold. Up to you!)

Sixth buy

Building this, you'll see a significant difference in damages to tanks and bruisers. It always make me feel good to have this item with me.

Seventh buys

, ,
Now which one you build first, is your preference but that ONLY applies if you have Tear of the Goddess's Mana Charge fully charged. (By 20-25 minutes into game you should have it filled) Athene's Unholy Grail will provide you with more magic resistance and mana regeneration. Seraph's Embrace will provide you with more AP,(ap bonus from archangel's staff) and a UNIQUE active spell that gives you shield for a short time when activated. Zhonya's Hourglass will provide you with extra AP and a UINQUE active spell that makes you invulnerable for 2 seconds when activated.
Build them according to situations. (Note:Why I recommend Chalice of Harmony and Tear of the Goddess: I believe that as games progresses sieging will become imminent and frequent with a Nidalee in a team. And from my perspective, 20% cooldown and Chalice of Harmony's great mana regen could definitely pay off during those moments (and not to mention magic resistance). Since spears are mostly aimed at squishy carries, I doubt more ap would be needed rather. Constant poking and healing allies with sufficient amount of mana seems better off for the team. I added Tear of the Goddess because not only will it give you ap and mana regen, its final item's UNIQUE active is very useful.

Last buy

Last buy, as always varies depending on your situation in the game. Think you need some more damage and cdr (cooldown reduction) for pokes? Get Morellonomicon. Think you need a defensive item and damage? Get Zhonya's Hourglass or Haunting Guise. Need to push towers? Get Lich Bane. I would even go Randuin's Omen, Banshee's Veil, or Guardian Angel if you're the prey of the enemy's team.

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Greater Mark of Precision

Greater Seal of Armor

Greater Glyph of Scaling Ability Power

Greater Glyph of Magic Resist

Greater Quintessence of Ability Power
Greater Mark of Hybrid Penetration

Now that thegreater hybrid penetration marks have been released, The extra armor penetration is a perfect fit for aa (auto attack) hungry Nidalee during early laning phase. The aa pokes could deal decent amount of damage early, and you'll always be winning the aa trade.

Greater Seal of Armor

These seals are vital part of every game you play assuming more than half of the enemy's team is building AD. These runes are what could save you, thanks to "luck," surviving with a sliver of health. (They will also maintain your aa trade advantage from your opponent due to extra armor)

Greater Glyph of Scaling Ability Power

These runes i would recommend against all ap/ad champions except for high burst champions such as Veigar, or LeBlanc; in that case I would take Glyph of Magic Resist. These runes are made to secure some late game damage since in teamfights, as Nidalee you are to throw spears from far away, and hopefully, most likely not get focused down/bursted down if played correctly.

Greater Glyph of Magic Resist

Taking these are always the safest choice for laning (against AP) but I believe that Nidalee has enough sustainability to stay in the safezone of health to survive even without these runes.

Greater Quintessence of Scaling Ability Power

These are very beneficial for your early spear damages since you're level 1 Javelin Toss literally deals 55- without any ap. With these runes, you could do damage AND last hit, even the minions close to you. 15 AP from these runes + Doran's Ring+ masteries gives you 40 AP to begin with, and level 1 Javelin Toss will do the chunks.

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Typical AP masteries 21/0/9

To point out some things, 2 points on Butcher will definitely make last hitting much easier. Your split second "oops I think I hit it too early!" could be covered by this.
Meditation is especially necessary for early gameNidalee since she'll be needing that mana for sustain, pokes, and safety Bushwhack

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Skill Sequence

Ability Sequence
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18

The reason I predominantly chose Javelin Toss at level 1 is to secure the first one or two minions at the start of the game.(Mid laners tend to miss one or two minions at the start because they leash for their junglers) You could spear a red buff or blue buff (depending on which one jungler chooses) at the maximum distance for the ultimate leash, and not miss a single cs(creep score).
Exception to getting Javelin Toss at lvl 1 would be when you are certain that the enemy team will invade your jungle (Ex. Blitzcrank and Thresh, then start with Bushwhack and start spamming them into brushes for map control and vision. If your team is the invaders, you may choose between the two, spear or trap depending on teammates you have.

As AP Nidalee you would always max your Q Javelin Toss -no exceptions- since this IS your main damage.
Next skill to max out next would be E Primal Surge for better sustainability and tower pushing.
& Eventually W Bushwhack will become the last one to max out. The main purpose of this skill is to defend yourself from ganks. Placing traps on side bushes could definitely reduce the risk of getting yourself killed. By the time you start putting points on this skill, laning phase should be coming to an end.

And of course- level 6,11 and 16 are there to upgrade your ultimate, Aspect Of The Cougar

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Sumonner Spells

Nidalee is more of a chunker than anything else. Sure Ignite could come in handy for laning and aggressive plays, but so can Barrier. If you time your barrier and heal at the right timing, you can save yourself from enemy's ignite.


You know what this does. I guess, it's personal preference.

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There are combos you can use to farm.
First approach the small ranged minions at the back, Pounce them, and Swipe them. That should kill them no matter what. If this is your first time, it's possible to miss Swipe, either too far back or too far out if this is your first time. Practice.

Use it when enemy minion has below 50% for semi, maximum damage. This skill is very good for securing last hits, finishing off cannon minions.

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Many of you may wonder, "do I use the cougar form during teamfights?" or "do I merely throw spears at all times?"
My answer is,both.
This is how it would usually go, once a teamfight starts, you stand back and aim your spears at your opponent's ap carry or ad carry, if absolutely impossible, just shoot your spears at anyone maintaining your distance. Once you have noticed that everyone used up their skills, and the advantage is at your favor, you go in with your aspect of cougar and start comboing them down. Never abruptly run in as Nidalee as cougar form when teamfight breaks out. And make sure to heal your allies during teamfights!

Combo- to a single target ---> --->

Note: If a Nidalee is in a team, that automatically makes your team a poke team comp, so harassing with your spears as much as you can before a teamfight breaks out is most optimal.

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Wall Jumps

These are some of the walls you can Pounce through. There are more.

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Tips and Tricks

Javelin Toss - For maximum damage, right after you throw the spear, use Aspect Of The Cougar and Pounce back (away from the spear).

Bushwhack - Use this to secure short time visions on brushes and while battling, if possible, place them ahead of where your opponent is heading, they may step on the trap.

Primal Surge - Fastest way to heal yourself is Alt + E known as (self casting). Use this when pushing towers for attack speed boost.

Aspect Of The Cougar - Using the cougar form to travel is the fastest way to travel. Spam Pounce to jump farther as you go.

Spam skills while in cougar form to charge up Tear of the Goddess ASAP.

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Thank you all for taking time to read this guide.
This my first attempt on guides so constructive criticisms are very welcomed.

Jhoihoi's How to Make a Guide guide was vital to make this guide less boring, easy reading and "luxurious"! Thank her for that :)